Mexican heritage children are at greater risk to become overweight or obese than children of other ethnic or racial groups. The objective of this study was to gain insight into the lived experiences of Mexican-heritage mothers caring for overweight or obese preschool children. A qualitative, hermeneutic phenomenological design was selected for this study. Saturation was achieved with 12 mothers of Mexican heritage. Data collection and analysis was guided by the phenomenological approach of Max van Manen. Six themes and sixteen subthemes emerged from the data. Maternal caring practices were influenced by their Mexican heritage, emotional burdens, perceptions of child's weight status, disconnectedness and connectedness with family and health care professionals, being resourceful, and the linking of past family history and practices with present needs in order to protect children from untoward consequences of overweight.

Date of publication

Spring 4-30-2012

Document Type




Persistent identifier


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Nursing Commons